5 Steps to an embodied, effective and enjoyable workout.
Everyone wants an enjoyable and effective workout. Here are 5 steps to a more mindful experience.
When I lived in New Zealand back in 2000 I met a personal trainer who was way ahead of his time. He shared with me his concept of bringing a client into their body and the moment, before they started their workout. To me this was a foreign concept, having the traditional, methodical lessons of University still in my head of warm-up, workout, cool-down, stretch. His clients at the time, like mine now, were very busy and stressed so getting them out of their head was vital for an effective workout.
Now, years later I have tweaked this concept meshing it with pilates foundations for a modern view.
Here are my five steps to get you embodied for an enjoyable and effective movement session.
Stop. Slow down. Breathe. Anchor
1.To start your session:
- Stand comfortably with your arms by your sides
- Shoulders relaxed away from your ears, eyes looking straight ahead
- Shoulder blades floating on your back
- Find your balance on the bottoms of your feet (mindfully anchor) as you gently wrap your abdominal muscles (corset your core unit) while feeling an imaginary string lightly float your head to the ceiling, lengthening your spine.
This is the beginning of what I call the “stacked” position. Learn it here in my Life Labs VIDEO.
2.Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Keep this breathing going, finding a rhythm and length of breath for you. Do this ten times easily as you observe how your body feels. Keep it simple….notice any areas feeling great as well as those holding some tension.
3.Start your workout as you keep your awareness in your body. This may seem like an obvious practice but think of those times you rampaged through a workout just to get it over with because you were tired or strapped for time. Now, be in your body. Be aware. Focus on the muscles working as you move.
4.Half way through your workout: Stop, slow down, breathe, anchor. Stand in the stacked position for ten breaths. This break should be a natural occurrence in a movement session as rest is important for recovery. Continue your workout.
5.Finish your workout in the stacked position. Flow through ten deep breaths, feeling your body as you started the session. Notice any areas of tension and bits now feeling fabulous!
The bonuses of using this practice are:
- Better posture
- More confidence
I know this simple straightforward practice will benefit your activities and how you feel. Use it for your next movement session and let me know how it goes.
Share your experiences with this below or find me on twitter @positivelyslim
Has this inspired you to discover a more mindful way to live?
Check out my Simple Healthy Living EBOOK here.